SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 Sports) – The Utah Jazz feel like they got a steal with the 40th pick in the 2021 NBA draft.
Utah drafted Jared Butler, a six-foot three-inch guard from Baylor. Butler wasn’t expecting to fall to the 40th pick but he’s happy he landed with the Jazz.
“It was a rough night for me, but when the Jazz called me I was extremely thankful,” said Butler. “This is where I’m supposed to be and just honored for sure.”
Utah originally had the 30th pick in the NBA draft but in a trade with the Memphis Grizzlies for the 40th pick and two future second-round picks.
The Jazz were able to get their guy while also building up future assets.
Butler has a connection with the Jazz, having known Dennis Lindsey’s son who also played at Baylor, and he likes what he knows about the team.
“I like how they shoot a lot of 3’s, obviously at Baylor we shot a lot of 3’s, catch and shoot, off the dribble, pick and roll, so I’m excited about that and I feel the culture here is something that I can adjust to,” said Butler. And he has felt welcomed by the team from the moment they selected him. “Coach Quin was the first person to call me on draft night and he was pretty emotional. He understood my story and relayed to me that he was happy I fell to 40 and you could tell he drafted me as a person and wanted me for who I am and not just basketball skills.”
Butler wants to learn and he’ll have an opportunity to learn more skills from guys like all-stars Donovan Mitchell and possibly Mike Conley.
“It’s like a gold mine for me because the level they’re at in their career and what they’re doing is something that I want to do,” said Butler. “I have no problem being like, ‘Mike, how do I get there? How do I be like you?’ and so it’s like a gold mine for me.”